Thank you Outsider. Your comments are the most sound I've read on the topic thus far. Indians have managed the fishery successfully for thousands of years. It wasn't until dams and irresponsible mining came along that the fishery was devasted. In fact, in the ten years after the dams were built on the Trinity River, the fishery declined by 80-percent.
I've lived in Hoopa my whole life and fished these rivers just as long. Sure, some salmon are sold from time to time. But that really is a rarity. The only reason they were sold this year, is because the ocean fishery is shut down and there is quite a demand for salmon in the Bay Area. The total take of salmon has reduced dramatically since ocean fisherman aren't taking the usual 100,000 to 200,000 fish. Our hearts go out to those folks too. It used to be there were plenty of salmon for all, if managed wisely. Today, the state and federal governments water priorities are screwed up leaving river communities and fisherman to fight for scraps. It's too bad Mr. Augeny is too short sighted to see the real culprit here is the governments mismanagement of water on the west coast.
Most Hoopa fish end up on our tables and in our ceremonies. Most families fish until they have enough to freeze or preserve to provide for an occasional salmon meal over the next year. In my 30 some-odd years living here, I've never seen a net stretched accross the entire river. Other tribal members would never allow it! To do so would invite some sort of retalliation from other tribal fishermen. There is a mutual understanding on this river. You don't take more than you need and you make sure there is enough for everybody.
If you look at sport fisherman's numbers, they've taken just as many fish so far than the Hupa Tribe.
In Print This Week:
Dec 5, 2013
vol XXIV issue 49
The North Coast Journal Weekly
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